The Slovenia Times

New Translation of Pippi Longstockings Out after Almost Six Decades


The translation by Nada Grošelj was done directly from Swedish as opposed to the classic 1958 version, which Kristina Brenkova translated from German.

The original and so far only translation was reprinted 19 times and is the best selling work of youth fiction in Slovenia with 140,000 copies sold.

Alenka Veler of Mladinska knjiga explained that the decision for a new translation came after different editors had made so many corrections to the original as to spoil it, while it was also time that Slovenian readers got a direct translation.

One of the dilemmas faced by Grošelj, a recipient of the prestigious Sovre Award for translators, was what to do with the expressions that Brenkova took from the German translation and have become part of the Slovenian collective unconscious.

She opted for the Swedish original, wishing to offer young readers the expressions coined by Lindgren. Thus, the Taka-Tuka island will for instance from now on be known as Kurrekurredutt to Slovenian children.

Grošelj rejected the popular belief that Brenkova had to make scores of alterations to the original because of ideological demands, explaining that it was mostly holidays that had been affected.

The new version, which preserved the original illustrations by Marlenka Stupica, for instance rehabilitates the Christmas tree, which is referred to as the New Year's tree in Brenkova's version.

Asked about the continuing allure of Pippi Longstockings, Grošelj has recently told the STA that "she embodies the dream of every child - to be strong, independent and able to resist being manipulated by others".

The new edition meanwhile comes just in time for the 26th Pikin Festival or Pippi Longstockings children's festival themed on Pippi's character. The town of Velenje will host it between 20 and 26 September.


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